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Brady’s Lackluster Debut, Cam Newton Solid, McCarthy’s Field Goal Decision, Tuscaloosa HS Historic Game Ending

FOOTBALL

Here are a few recaps from the first weekend of NFL games:

Tom Brady’s much-anticipated debut as the quarterback for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers did not go smoothly. He threw for 239 yards and two touchdowns but was also intercepted twice. The Bucs lost to the New Orleans Saints 23-34.

Cam Newton, Brady’s replacement as QB of the New England Patriots, had a solid debut with his new team. With his two rushing touchdowns, he helped the Pats beat the Miami Dolphins 21-11. There was a bit of skirmish at the end of the game when some Miami players tried to grab his chains, but Cam told reporters, “I still got my chain. I got two of ’em. They were reaching for my chain, though. They were reaching for my chain. And I think that kind of got under my skin. But yeah, through it all, man listen — I do not want nothing to be taken away from a great team game that we did have. And I don’t want to be selfish to kind of focus or dwell on that. I think for us as a team, or me personally — a lot of tempers can flare. And I was just teasing with coach, just letting him know that the College Park almost came out in me. Yet, through it all, man, it was all fun and games; and it was expected.”

Dallas Cowboys’ new coach Mike McCarthy is getting some heat for his controversial decision not to tie the game with a field goal in the fourth quarter. The Cowboys ended up losing to the Los Angeles Rams 17-20.

For more NFL highlights, click here.

In high school football over the weekend, Tuscaloosa’s Hillcrest High School pulled off an amazing upset against Wetumpka. Hillcrest was down two points with 59 yards to go to the opponent’s end zone. With nine laterals on the final play, the game was reminiscent of the infamous 1982 Standford-Cal game. Check this out!

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Chiefs Beat Texans On TNF, Edwards-Helaire’s Debut, House Jr. Protocol Violation

FOOTBALL

The NFL season is underway with the defending Super Bowl champions, the Kanas City Chiefs, dominating the Houston Texans on Thursday night. After an early touchdown by the Texans, the Chiefs went on a 31-0 run and never looked back. The big story of the night was rookie running back Clyde Edwards-Helaire’s impressive debut. Edwards-Helaire rushed for 138 yards and a touchdown in a 34-20 win. The Chiefs stood for the National Anthem, while the Texans remained in the locker room. Both teams then linked arms for a moment of silence before the game. Arrowhead Stadium allowed about 17,000 people in the stands to cheer on the team.

BASKETBALL

The NBA is still investigating Houston Rockets forward Danuel House Jr. for a potential bubble protocol violation.  According to reports, House Jr. let a woman into his room Monday night. Apparently she was in the bubble to administer COVID-19 tests but was flagged at one of the checkpoints. House said he “vehemently” denies any wrongdoing, but if he’s in the wrong, his teammates have reason to be furious with him. The team is down 3-1 against the Lakers and could use House Jr. in the lineup.

 

 

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Mitchell Joins Elite Group In Scoring, Harrell/Doncic Skirmish, Doncic’s Buzzer-Beater, Kobe Bryant Day, Thomas Terminated

BASKETBALL

Utah Jazz’s Donovan Mitchell joined Michael Jordan, Allen Iverson, and Wilt Chamberlain as the only NBA players to score 50 or more points in a single playoff run. Mitchell’s 51 points in a Game 4 win over the Denver Nuggets overshadowed Denver’s Jamal Murray’s 50 points. According to Elias Sports Bureau, it was the first time in playoff history that two opposing players scored at least 45 points.  With the win, the Utah Jazz take a commanding 3-1 lead in the first round of the playoff series.

After the LA Clippers Game 3 win over the Dallas Mavericks on Friday, Montrezl Harrell was caught referring to the Mavericks’ Luka Doncic as “a (expletive) white boy”. Doncic also derided Harrell by telling him to “stop flopping”. Both players received technical fouls, and both players apologized for their comments.

Luka wasn’t supposed to play in Game 4 after spraining his ankle Friday night, but thankfully for the team, he joined them on Sunday. In an exciting buzzer-beater in overtime, Luka hit an astounding 3-pointer to tie the series 2-2.

August 24th is Kobe Bryant Day in Orange County, CA. The day, chosen for the two jersey numbers Bryant wore while with the Lakers, honors the basketball legend who tragically died in January in a helicopter crash.

FOOTBALL

The Baltimore Ravens terminated Earl Thomas’s contract due to personal conduct issues. According to reports, Thomas punched teammate Chuck Clark during practice. For a timeline of Thomas’s disruptive time in the NFL, click here.

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Kittle Highest Paid TE, BodyArmor Wants To Surpass Gatorade, Curry Could Have Own Brand, Kobe Bryant Day

FOOTBALL

The San Francisco 49ers made tight end George Kittle the highest-paid tight end in NFL history. Kittle will make  $75 million over five years, including an $18 million signing bonus. $30 million guaranteed at signing and $40 million guaranteed for injury.

OTHER

BodyArmor is trying to surpass Gatorade as the #1 sports drink. The company lists James Harden, Mike Trout, Naomi Osaka, and recently  Christian McCaffrey as some of their athletic partnerships. BodyArmor’s CEO Mike Repole said, “This is either going to go bankrupt in five years or going to be the No. 1 sports drink by 2025.”

According to a report by Letsgowarriors.com, Stephen Curry could have his own brand (similar to Michael Jordan’s label, Jordan Brand, with Nike) through Under Armour.  Under Armour hasn’t confirmed or denied the report.

Orange County supervisors declared August 24th as “Kobe Bryant Day” in Southern California county where the superstar lived before his tragic helicopter accident.

 

 

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LeSean McCoy A Buccaneer, Jazz & Lakers Win In NBA First Night

FOOTBALL

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers are serious about helping out their new quarterback Tom Brady. According to ESPN, the team signed veteran running back LeSean McCoy to a one-year deal.

BASKETBALL

Utah Jazz’s Rudy Gobert, the first NBA player to test positive for COVID-19, scored the first and last points as the Jazz beat the New Orleans Pelicans 106-104 on Thursday night. In a puzzling coaching decision, the Pelicans benched their star player Zion Williamson for the final 7 minutes of play. He played a total of 15 minutes and scored 13 points in his team’s loss.

In the second game of the night, LeBron James finished big for the LA Lakers and helped them pull off a 103-101 win over the LA Clippers.

 

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NFL Players Concerned About Logistics Of Season, LeBron’s Rookie Card $1.845 Mill

FOOTBALL

Some influential NFL players are not satisfied with the logistics of how the League is planning to start the season. Training camps are expected to open this week, and the players are concerned about the lack of information on what’s been put in place to maintain health and safety standards. Under the collective bargaining agreement, the league can impose report dates, and the teams can fine players if they refuse to show up. Some notable stars took to twitter. Here’s a sampling of what they said,

Drew Brees: “We need football! We need sports! We need hope! The NFL’s unwillingness to follow the recommendations of their own medical experts will prevent that. If the NFL doesn’t do their part to keep players healthy, there is no football in 2020. It’s that simple. Get it done, NFL.”

Patrick Mahomes: “Getting ready to report this week hoping the NFL will come to agreement with the safe and right protocols so we can feel protected playing the sport we love”

Clemson’s star quarterback Trevor Lawrence proposed to his girlfriend Marissa Mowry at Clemson’s Memorial Stadium. Lawrence led the Tigers to back-to-back College Football Playoffs where he helped them beat Alabama for the Championship in his freshman year and led them to an undefeated season in his sophomore year (where they ended up losing to LSU in the championship). Lawrence and Mowry have been dating since high school.

BASKETBALL

LeBron James set yet another record when his rookie card sold for $1.845 million, the most money ever paid for a basketball card at an auction.

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Washington Red Tails Odds On Favorites, 2 NBA Players Flout Bubble Rules

FOOTBALL

The Washington Redskins officially announced they will change their name for the 2021 season. Oddsmakers are getting in on the action and taking bets on the new franchise nickname. As of now, the Redtails is the favorite at 3/1 odds. The National Office for Tuskegee Airmen Incorporated, the office for the military aviation group called the Tuskegee Airmen, who were the first Black aviators in the U.S. Army Air Corps and helped desegregate the military, weighed in. Nicknamed the “Red Tails” because they painted the tails of their planes crimson, the group was known for their heroics in World War II.  The organization offered up a statement saying, “If the Washington D.C. NFL franchise chooses to rename themselves as the Washington Red Tails, it would honor the Tuskegee Airmen legacy and be symbolic for all of America.“

After Redtails, the Washington Generals are at 4/1 odds with the Washington Presidents at 5/1 odds.

BASKETBALL

NBA players are entertaining us with stories of quarantining in the Disney Bubble in Orlando in anticipation of the season resuming on July 30th, but two players (Houston Rockets forward Bruno Caboclo and Sacramento Kings center Richaun Holmes) flouted the rules and will now have a longer quarantine period. Part of the protocol required players to quarantine in their rooms for 48 hours after arriving at their hotels. After 48 hours, players could roam the bubble grounds, but if they left the site, they would have to immediately quarantine again. Caboclo vacated his room during the 48-hour window, while Holmes left the bubble to get food delivery.

 

 

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Ivy League Shuts Fall Athletics, Stanford Permanently Cancels 11 Sports, Ohio State/N.Carolina Pause Workouts, NFL Allows Opt Out

COLLEGE SPORTS

The Ivy League announced it is shutting down all athletics this fall due to the coronavirus pandemic. There is no decision yet on what the “Power Five” schools will do, especially considering these schools generate significant football revenue. The Power Five consists of the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC), Big Ten Conference, Big 12 Conference, Pac-12 Conference, and the Southeastern Conference (SEC). For comparison, in 2019 the Ivy League generated approximately $30 million in football revenue, while the Big Ten generated $1 billion in revenue.

Stanford University announced it is permanently cutting 11 of its 36 varsity sports due to COVID-19 related deficits. The sports affected are field hockey, lightweight rowing, men’s rowing, squash, co-ed and women’s sailing, men’s and women’s fencing, synchronized swimming, men’s volleyball, and wrestling.

Ohio State will pause all voluntary athletic workouts (including football) due to many athletes testing positive for COVID-19. North Carolina also paused voluntary football workouts when 37 COVID-19 tests came back positive.

NFL

The NFL and NFLPA (National Football League Players Association) agreed to allow players to sit out the 2020 season if they have concerns related to the coronavirus pandemic.

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Mahomes Monstrous Contract, DeSean Jackson’s Anti-Semitic Social Media Posts

FOOTBALL

The Kansas City Chiefs signed Super Bowl-winning quarterback (and MVP) Patrick Mahomes to a monstrous 10-year contract extension worth up to $503 million, with an injury guarantee of $141.8 million. Mahomes will make an average salary of $45 million per year dwarfing Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson’s annual average of $35 million per year. Mahomes’s contract is the richest contract in the history of pro sports.

Philadelphia Eagles receiver DeSean Jackson posted anti-Semitic messages on social media with quotes attributed to Adolf Hitler and Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan. The quote attributed to Hitler read,  “[white Jews] will blackmail America. [They] will extort America, their plan for world domination won’t work if the Negroes know who they were.” He also expressed his admiration for Louis Farrakhan, who is widely known as an anti-Semite. The Eagles owner and general manager are both Jewish, but the team has not publicly commented on the posts.

 

 

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Signing Waiver To Attend Games, Washington Redskins Under Pressure To Change Name

FOOTBALL

The NFL is going to leave it up to individual teams to decide if they’ll allow fans to attend games. There will be safety protocols in place, and the teams will likely ask fans to sign a waiver agreeing to recuse the NFL from any liability if they contract COVID-19 while attending a game. The stadiums will also be required to go cashless.

Corporate sponsors, fans, local officials, and a Hall of Fame coach are putting pressure on the Washington Redskins to change their name. Shareholders and investors sent Nike, FedEx, and PepsiCo letters asking the brands to cut ties with the franchise if they don’t make the change.

Hall of Fame coach and current NFL broadcaster Tony Dungy also weighed in saying he makes a conscious effort not to say “Redskins” during broadcasts. “When I’m on the air, I try to just refer to them as Washington. I think it’s appropriate. If the team doesn’t want to change, the least I can do is try not to use it.”

 

 

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